36 HISTORY OF PERSIA CHAP. but also in Persia, the remote Kerman province in particular being periodically troubled by the appearance of these visionaries in dangerously large bands. The Last Tears of Alt 3 Caliphate.—AH had raised a large force for invading Syria once more, but after the diversion against the Kharijites it melted away so rapidly that the entire expedition had to be abandoned* The Arabs, indeed, were curiously indifferent to AIL In the following year, A.H. 38 (658), he lost Egypt^ through an unwise change of Governors, and this misfortune preyed upon his mind ; but he made no grand effort to retrieve his position. In the course of the same year rebellion was stirred up in Southern Persia by Khirrit, an Arab chief whose views resembled those of the Kharijites. Up to this point, it would seem, only Moslems had fought in these civil wars, but Khirrit raised Persians, Kurds, and Christians, and drove the Arab Governor out of Pars, and much blood was shed before he was slain and order re-established. Ziad, an illegitimate half- brother of Muavia, whom All now appointed to Pars, showed great capacity both in restoring peace and in the administration of the country; indeed he was compared to Noshirwan. In A.H, 40 (660) AH made peace with Muavia, and it seemed as though at last his troubles were ended. His Assassination^ A.H. 40 (66i).~The fanatical Khari- jites, seeing that they could not force their doctrines on the empire, were in hopeless mood. Three of them discussed the gloomy situation, and resolved each to kill a leader of Islam, AH, Muavia, and Amr being the selected victims. Amr escaped through being absent on the day they had fixed for the deed, Muavia was wounded and recovered, but Ali was mortally stabbed- With the magnanimity which characterized him, he gave orders that, if he died, the assassin should be executed but not tortured. After making his will, the unfortunate Caliph passed away and with him ended the period of theocracy in Islam. c His Character.—AK stands out as the Caliph who was too noble and high-minded for his surroundings.